Tigers Face Final Indoor Test Prior to C-USA Indoor Championships
Feb. 18, 2010
Memphis, Tenn. – The University of Memphis track and field teams will head to Cape Girardeau, Mo., on Friday for the Redhawk Invitational on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University.
The meet will get underway at 4 p.m. Friday and conclude around 10 p.m. Field events will begin at 4 p.m. and running events are slated to begin at 5 p.m. The Southeast Student Recreation Center is setup in manner that short sprinters and middle distance athletes will be the only track athletes seeing action.
“It is a final tune-up for our anaerobic athletes,” Robinson said. “We put our short sprinters, short hurdlers and all the field event athletes out there and that gives them the opportunity to get on an indoor track and have a high quality, high intensity practice before we leave for Houston on Wednesday.”
Three Tigers set school records last weekend at the Hoosier Hills Invitational. Tayanna Simpson broke the five-year standing 60m hurdles record of 8.72 seconds by nearly three-tenths of a second with a time of 8.49 seconds. LaShundra Kershaw broke the record of teammate LaBritney Horton in the 60m dash with a time of 7.50 seconds. For the third time this season, Karlis Pujats broke the record in the men’s pole vault with a vault of 5.12m (16-09.50).
“I think Tayanna and LaShundra breaking the school records and running their personal bests last weekend sets them up for a really great weekend,” Robinson said. “They are both healthy, excited and motivated and beginning to see that they can get to the NCAA qualifying mark. Both of them are only a couple of hundredths from qualifying for the NCAA Championships. That is the goal going into the weekend, lowering their personal bests and qualifying for the NCAA Championships. Same goes for Karlis since he is only eight centimeters away from qualifying. When he hits that 5.20m jump, he will be another guy that will qualify. We are pushing to break those national qualifying barriers and I think they are buying into the goals.”
Senior thrower Steffen Nerdal will return to the ring and compete in the men’s weight throw for the first time since Jan. 30th at the Rod McCravy Memorial. Nerdal has thrown a NCAA qualifying and school record throw of 22.81m (74-10.00) and ranks second in the nation with that mark entering meets this weekend.
“We are finally at a point where we have put the hammer away and are prepared to pick the weight up again and focus on the indoor season,” Robinson said. “That sounds strange, but we are really focused on the hammer for the outdoor season and right now we are just beginning the weight session. In fact, he had his first weight session in three weeks, yesterday. I think every time Steffen picks up the weight he can throw it very far. Honestly, we are not quite sure what will happen tomorrow, but we look for him to compete hard and begin the journey toward the national championships.”
Richard Lowe currently ranks fifth in C-USA in the 400m dash with his time of 48.74 seconds. Lowe also ranks 11th in the C-USA with a time of 22.13 seconds in the 200m dash.
The trio of Robert Jackson, Darius Anderson and Preston Williams rank third, fourth and fifth in the 60m hurdles for C-USA. Jackson set the third ranking last weekend at the Hoosier Hills Invitational with a time of 8.18 seconds and trails the second ranking by two hundredths of a second. Anderson ranks fourth with a time of 8.19 seconds with Williams ranking fifth with a time of 8.20 seconds.
After a solid meet at the Hoosier Hills Invitational last weekend, the Tigers look for strong performances in the last opportunity for preparation leading into the C-USA Indoor Championships next weekend in Houston, Texas.